“you can pick your friends, but you can’t pick your family…”
As founder you have done all the right things to pass the business along to your children. You have prepared a succession plan, setup your estate plan, dealt with the ego issues of letting go of your responsibility and giving up control. You have even planned for retirement and life after the business.
Problem is, the children aren’t ready. All of this planning is wasted if your successors aren’t in position to take over. More…
The recent announcement that the Washington Post newspaper was being sold to Jeff Bezos from Amazon.com, brought back memories of a speaker presentation that Alan Spoon, former president of The Washington Post gave at one of our Center’s meetings. Several years ago we had the opportunity to have Alan Spoon, meet with our Center members at the Northeastern University Center for Family Business, where he discussed the close working relationship he had with the Graham family. Some of the issues he discussed included; non-family executives, educating investors, creation of value and the benefits of longer term vision vs. short-term profits.
Following is a summary of Alan Spoon’s remarks when he was president of the Washington Post.
The Story of The Washington Post: Perspectives from the President
For ten years, Alan Spoon was President of The Washington Post, serving with the famed mother-son team of Katherine and Donald Graham. At this breakfast meeting, Center members learned how Alan managed his role as a non-family member leader of this exceedingly high profile family owned and managed enterprise. More…